GUEST COLUMN: Attempts to tame big tech could end innovation in Colorado – Sentinel Colorado

Innovation has long been a bedrock of American progress. For our communities to grow and develop, it has been the entrepreneurial and creative minds pursuing new ideas and opportunities that have driven us forward. 

In no industry has this been proven more true than with technology, which has made leaps and bounds in the past several decades to improve all aspects of our communities. As they say, a rising tide lifts all boats, and the rising tide of tech has been a service to us all in many ways.

Particularly when we were in the shadow of the pandemic, online tools and services became essential for how our businesses could operate, and even how many of us interacted with friends and loved ones. The simplicity and accessibility of online platforms has made business operations smoother and our interactions far more convenient. 

It would be difficult to go back to the time when we couldn’t contact one another at the click of a button, order an item we need to be delivered within days, or market our business all across the globe.

Beyond this, here in Colorado and across the country, tech has played a critical role in driving new job growth and encouraging the pursuit of ideas far beyond what we might’ve thought possible. As tech hubs grow in our cities, so too do the job opportunities available to our friends and the capabilities of our business. It’s critical that we keep this growth going to chart a positive path forward.

To do that, support from our government is essential, as is recognition of the positive partnership tech companies and their services have on the operations of our cities. 

This would seem obvious, and yet certain Representatives in Congress have found their way to debating legislation that could hamper the ability of tech companies to provide the tools our communities have been benefitting from. These proposals are a misguided attempt to “help consumers” that would instead have adverse effects on the capabilities of our cities.

The South Metro Chamber has long been working toward the goal of helping businesses prosper, and these proposed pieces of legislation are a step in the wrong direction for achieving that ideal. When working hand in hand with technology companies and the services they provide, our business community can improve its strength, sustainability, and value to the Denver area.

We’ve all watched the tumultuous state of our economy these past few years, why should we allow policies that could introduce even greater disruption? The attention should be on efforts to continue steadying our economic trajectory.

Technology plays an important role in taking all our cities, towns, and communities where we want them to go. If we restrict the companies that provide us with these tools and services, we would be doing a disservice to ourselves and each other. It’s critical that Congress remember their focus should be on policies that drive us forward, not to restrict our growth and potential.

Editor’s Note: Jeff Keener is the President of the South Metro Chamber.

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